Where There's Smoke

by Soufriere

First published

Spike wakes up in a world where nothing makes sense. Things rapidly go downhill from there. Explosions happen.

After a hard day's night, Spike wakes up in a place that should not exist to find Twilight having a conversation with him they already had years ago, only this time it takes a bizarre turn. And then ponies start cursing. And exploding. All he ever wanted was a proper bed, decent light-blocking curtains, and a jewelled cupcake.

Rated "M" for references to sexual acts and significant profanity.

They Pinch Back

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The sun peeked above the horizon, sending shafts of light through those little gaps in the curtains that, try as you might, you’re never really able to cover up, so you get an infinite brightness assaulting your eye first thing in the morning regardless of when you went to sleep. Not a big deal if one is an “early to bed, early to rise” type, but night-owls are distinctly disadvantaged, as are regular owls like poor Owloysius who hooted in protest at the light. So also are baby dragons forced to stay up most of the night reorganizing their boss/master/whatever’s massive library because she decided Dewey was for pussies.

Spike, formerly asleep in his pet bed, groaned at the sudden intrusion of the light on his slumber. Slowly, reluctantly, he made his way out of bed – his mind dwelling briefly on that time he requested proper sleeping quarters from Twilight, who promptly refused on the grounds of Spike’s tendency to breathe fire in his sleep and not having enough bits to keep buying new mattresses; Spike’s retort that the small stipend she received from Princess Celestia each month made her richer than 80% of Ponyville fell on deaf ears.

The encroaching light had not yet finished overtaking his room, so Spike was left fumbling in the near-dark for the door handle, which he found after a few seconds. He was not so lucky when it came to navigating the stairs. Misjudging their distance, he tripped near the top step and bounced, head over tail, down the steps to the floor below… or at least he should have done. Instead, before he reached the bottom with a satisfying crash, his body suddenly reversed itself and began bouncing up the stairs. Still on his head. No, it did not hurt any less doing it backwards. But then logical physics took over again just before he reached the top, sending him careening back down in the exact same fashion. This cycle repeated about three more times before he finally hit the ground for good. Once he regained consciousness, he considered how lucky he was that it is so difficult for dragons to have concussions.

The upper floor of Golden Oaks Library – which itself should have been a red flag for Spike since he had gone to sleep in Friendship Castle, but he was too out of it to notice – was bathed in the warm glow of the morning sun. Spike figured Celestia just didn’t feel like dwelling on sunrise today. Twilight the Unicorn not-Princess (which also should have tipped Spike off but didn’t) was pacing in a circle fretting about something, muttering incoherently to herself. When Spike attempted to greet her, she immediately rushed over to him, standing uncomfortably close and sporting a wild look in her eyes.

Spike remembered the last time Twilight had been like this. The parallels were uncanny enough that he briefly wondered if he’d run afoul of another time travel spell.

Twilight frantically queried: “Got any problems, troubles, or conundrums or any other sort of problems, troubles, conundrums or saus, that I as a gooooooood friend could help you solve??” She smiled expectantly. Spike realized he’d had a conversation like this with her before. He did not, however, recall Twilight putting that much emphasis on ‘good’, nor her voice inexplicably sounding of helium when she did so.

“Uh…I got nothin’,” he replied. Twilight’s expression immediately turned crestfallen. So much so, in fact, that Spike momentarily wondered if she might shatter from sheer sad. Two seconds later, Twilight did exactly that, her form breaking into four hundred twenty seven pieces, leaving a pile of glassy unicorn shards in a pile on the floor.

Mildly concerned – perhaps he should have been more so, but he’d seen Twilight perform much stranger magic – he made his way downstairs, only to find Pinkie Pie already in the library, staring at a random bookshelf.

“Oh, hey Pinkie,” Spike said as nicely as he could. Pinkie, however, ignored him. She was engrossed in the books on the shelf, most of which were reference materials.

“Ref-ref-ref-ref. Ref. Ref. Ref-ref. Ref-ref-ref,” Pinkie said to the books. Spike looked around, unsure of how to react. Pinkie continued. “Ref-ref. Ref-ref. Ref. Ref-ref-ref.”

This went on for about fifteen minutes. At that point, Pinkie lifted off the ground despite her lack of wings (or any movement at all) and floated out the nearest window. Less than a second later, a knock at the door knocked Spike out of his stupor. Twilight, suddenly whole again, made it to the door before he could. They were greeted by Pinkie Pie, now wearing a clown nose and a large woven basket on her back. She began singing.

“Thiiiis… is your Singing Tele—”

Twilight slammed the door in Pinkie’s face. Spike stared at her in dumbfounded shock as she contentedly returned to her room to do lord only knows what. Spike knew from experience that upsetting Pinkie was a bad move, so he headed out into town to track her down and smooth things over.

In front of the library, Twilight – who must have used her teleportation ability – stood amongst her best friends (only friends, really, but don’t tell her that). Once she saw Spike, she gave him the most contented smile.

“Ahh,” Twilight sighed contentedly, “What a gorgeous fucking day!”

Spike’s eyes went wide in amazement. Such language was unheard of in Ponyville or even Canterlot; only Manehattan speech got that crude. Twilight continued as if she had not just dropped a significant curse.

“I feel like singing!” she said excitedly. Her five friends all agreed it was an excellent idea. On cue, an instrumental backing track swelled up out of nowhere.

“When I was young, I was too busy to have any frieirf…”

Spike blinked. That didn’t sound right at all. But the others were still bobbing their heads to the beat.

“Such silliness seemed fucking gay!” (Twilight spoke the naughty words rather than sing them)

“Uh, Twilight? Are you feeling okay? Did a bunch of books fall on your head again?” Spike asked.

“But my little ponies, you opened up my eyes…!”

“At least that line sounded normal,” Spike said to no one in particular.

“And now the world is crystal clear, with splendid summer skies! And it’s such a wonderful surprise!”

Huh. Maybe I was just imagining what I heard before, Spike mused internally as the backing track reached the refrain.

“I used to suck my brother’s meat,” Twilight sang as her horn glowed and projected a 16’x9’ image of a filly Twilight giving Shining Armor fellatio. Spike almost vomited.

“Ugh! I did NOT need to see that! What is going on here, Twilight??”

“Oh, shit. It’s Mister Clean,” Twilight said-sang in semi-response.

Immediately behind the other five, Spike noted the arrival of a friendly looking bald human wearing a white muscle shirt and holding a white sponge.

“Big adventure!” Rainbow Dash sang as she flew into a cliffside and exploded.

“Tons of faaf!” Pinkie Pie continued before popping out of existence again.

“A beautiful Fart,” sang Rarity, the stench around her strong enough that it had become visible. Spike was momentarily tempted to breathe fire into it just to see what might happen.

“Cleans hard-to-reach areas,” Mister Clean stated in place of Applejack’s lyric.

“Sharing shishness,” sang Fluttershy

“It’s an easy feat!” Twilight took over the melody, “and Magic Eraser makes it allllll…”

All the ponies suddenly froze in place. A text box appeared in the middle of the field. “Friendship has stopped working. If you reset the program, you might die. Do you still want to continue?” it read. Spike was extremely tempted to press ‘yes’. Unfortunately for him, Mister Clean swiped the Magic Eraser over the text, banishing it to the land of wind and ghosts. Five seconds later, the bald man ‘cleaned’ Twilight and her friends. Spike decided this was a good time to leave.

Along the street, he saw Applejack’s cousin Braeburn, which was itself unusual since that guy was not known to ever leave Appleloosa except at family reunions. Regardless, Braeburn was in a foul mood. “Goddamn ponies. My apple tree beats me every day. T’ain’t fair,” he groused. Spike nodded in agreement, since that did sound pretty unfair, as Braeburn continued, “Boggles the mom. We sexy ponies built this Dunkin’ Donuts in just seven minutes!”

Spike looked over to his right, where Braeburn had gestured. Sure enough, there was a Dunkin’ Donuts outlet where previously had stood an empty lot. But, aside from the coffee sometimes, Spike was not a fan, so he resumed walking.

Sugarcube Corner seemed a safe enough place. He knew the Cakes still had at least four jeweled cupcakes on hand – with Rarity’s help, they had made six, and Spike was the only being in town who could (or would) eat them. As he entered, he carefully threaded his way through the throngs of ponies queuing up for muffins and other sweet treats. Pinkie Pie was behind the counter, where logic would have her being.

“Hey there, Spike!” Pinkie called out to him. “I bet you want a Special Dragon’s Special, right?”

“Heh, yeah. You got me there,” Spike admitted with a blush. “Once you’re done with all these ponies, you think you could get one for me?”

“Meme… Rafrafrafrafraf!” Pinkie replied before spinning her head around no less than five times. Spike knew the mare regularly made a mockery of physics, but an 1800º head-twist was out of place even for her. He decided to just go into the back and talk to one of the Cakes himself.

In the kitchen area, neither Carrot nor Cup Cake were anywhere to be found. Standing in front of the oven instead was Apple Bloom, wearing an oversized chef’s hat. Spike briefly noticed she lacked a cutie mark. Before he could say anything, Apple Bloom’s gaze met his own.

“Sega,” Apple Bloom said as Pinkie appeared from behind the hat and started singing while staring at a bowl of cupcake batter.

“Baking these treats is such a bitch, add a teaspoon of Godzilla!” …and Pinkie did exactly that. Spike wondered how on earth she was able to acquire chunks of the nuclear-blasted creature’s flesh, but opted not to question it. Instead, he decided to leave out the back door.

Spike exited Sugarcube Corner to immediately find himself at Sweet Apple Acres, which was odd considering the two places are nearly a mile apart. A few yards away he saw Twilight, now wearing horn-rimmed glasses and her mane in a bun, talking to Rainbow Dash, who was laying on her back on a bench.

“Tell me about your shoes,” Twilight asked, more forcefully than was necessary.

“I don’t have any shoes, jackass,” Rainbow Dash responded. Then everything was subsumed by a rainbow-coloured mushroom cloud. Spike, being ultra resilient due to his thick dragon scales, felt nothing.

Several yards away, he saw Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle, both also inexplicably lacking cutie marks and looking a bit smaller than usual, sitting at a crappy piano. Scootaloo began to sing, Spike noting that her skills had deteriorated significantly since the last time he’d heard her a couple weeks earlier.

“We fucked the fight! Fucked the walk! Fucked the talk! Eat the… uh…” Scootaloo clearly was at a loss for words, but recovered quickly. “…cock?” Then she groaned in frustration.

Well, at least that song made more internal sense than whatever the hell Twilight belted out, Spike thought.

Sweetie Belle took the opportunity to deliver her assessment, in a voice that sounded rather high-pitched even for her: “Dumb fabric!”

“What the hay, asshole?” Scootaloo retorted, annoyed.

“Well, you see,” Sweetie Belle explained, completely ignoring the insult, “In the ertaeht, it’s considered bad luck to say ‘good fabric’, so you say ‘dumb fabric’.”

“Okay. I really need to tell Princess Celestia about this,” Spike said. He grabbed a scroll out of a nearby log – he had hidden several around Ponyville because he could never be sure when Twilight would demand he write something – scrawled the word ‘HELP’, and flamed it off the to the Princess. Then he sat on the log and waited for that uncomfortable feeling in his throat that meant a reply.

As luck would have it, he was already in the Throne Room of the Royal Palace (as was the log for some reason). Celestia stood regally, staring severely at the massive double doors. She did not seem to notice Spike at all. Just then the doors few open and Twilight and the other five ran in… and then ran out… and then ran back in again.

“Princess Celestia! We came as fast as we could!” Twilight insisted.

“Thank.” Celestia replied, “Fuck you all.” Rarity nodded at this, but Celestia wasn’t through speaking: “Discord,” she explained simply. “After discovering the Elephants of Harmony, my sister and I combined our powers and rubbed his penis, turning it to stone!” she blushed at this admission.

That actually explains a lot, Spike thought.

“All right, Princess!” Rainbow Dash cheered her for some reason.

“Stop Discord! Before he thrusts all of us with his penis,” Celestia concluded grimly.

“We’d be honoured to use the Elephants of Harmony again,” Twilight assured her in full suck-up mode. Then they, along with Spike, exited the throne room to reconvene in the receiving hall.

Twilight began her usual pep-talk. “Princess Celes has given us this mission, and we must fail!” Rainbow Dash saluted in response. “If we do, Michigan will be covered in smoke for the next years!”

“Talk about getting your beauty sleep!” Rarity said.

“Seriously, Rarity? That was… lame,” Spike replied, though only Pinkie appeared to notice him. “This is just… no. Do whatever you want, Twilight. I’m out.”

After Spike bade the ponies farewell, he walked out of the palace and made his way the few blocks to Pony Joe’s doughnut shop. Despite the short distance, night had fallen by the time he got there for some reason. He also found Twilight and the others already sitting at one of the larger tables, surrounded by thirty-six bottles of hooch. Twilight looked dishevelled and wore a look of concern.

“I hope Princess Celestia isn’t upset with us,” she said. As luck would have it, (what kind of luck is up for debate) Celestia appeared behind them.

“Fuck you! Fuck you! Fuck. You!” the nigh-immortal Ruler Of Equestria and Lord of the Sun explained.

“Princess Celestia is upset with us,” Twilight stated the obvious, but Celestia then shifted back to her usual regal bearing and began to console the ponies she had just verbally ripped a new one.

“Oh, Twat,” the Princess said with a grin, “The Grand Gralloping Grala is gralways grawful! That’s why I was thrilled that you were not sober.” She motioned over to the multiple servings of alcohol around them.

They all laughed. Celestia motioned over to Joe and gave her order: “Waffles”, which suddenly materialized out of thin air.

Spike knew better than anyone how terrible Twilight was at holding her liquor, so he nope’d on out of Pony Joe’s before the ice buckets came out. But before he could reach either the train station or the charter carriage flights (essentially Pegasus-drawn rickshaws only used by the highest-level Nobility due to their high cost), he found himself whisked away by something very fast and very pink, and everything went dark.

After an interminable five minutes in total darkness, an extremely bright lamp clicked on. Spike winced from the sudden change. Once his eyes adjusted, he found himself in a wooden chair, face to face with Pinkie Pie. He wanted to ask what Pinkie wanted, but the pony answered for him.

“All you have to do is… kuk,” she explained, smiling, her eyes half-lidded.

Spike did NOT like that look on her face. He attempted to talk his way out of the room, but that only made Pinkie mad.

“I want you to confess!” she near-screamed, her face getting uncomfortably close to his.

“Confess?” Spike asked her. He was totally lost at this point.

“CONFESS!!” she reiterated.

“Fine,” Spike said. “Sometimes, when no one’s around, I do this…” He jumped off the chair and bounced rapidly on his tail like a jackhammer. It made a small dent in the floor. Pinkie looked absolutely befuddled – a rare sight to be sure – but she soon shook herself out of it and angrily inserted herself back into Spike’s personal space.

“Tell me…” she demanded, “that my friends are all friends!”

Well now. That seemed reasonable enough. “Your friends are all friends!” Spike confirmed.

“Ha!” Pinkie ha’d triumphantly. “I knew it!!” At that point her mane began to inflate, far past the level one would consider safe. Spike tried to say something, but Pinkie merely looked confused as her mane became several times the size of her head. Spike took cover just in time as she exploded – 45,923 oddly rubbery pieces of pink pony burst forth in all directions. His world went black.


Spike slowly opened his eyes. As everything came into focus, he realized he was back in his room in the Friendship Castle, sitting on a stool. He blinked several times in a vain attempt for his brain to adjust. Finally, he allowed himself to scan his perimeter, and noticed Discord reclining on nothing, calmly drinking a milk of glass.

“Welcome back, Spike,” Discord said as pleasantly as he was capable, “Have a nice dream?”

“Wha? I… what??” Spike sputtered as Pinkie Pie entered the room, grinning from ear to ear.

“Happy Birthday, Spike!” Pinkie gushed, a small shower of confetti emanating from her very being.

“Birthday?” Spike asked, still out of it.

“Well you see…” Discord began, but Pinkie interrupted him.

“Today’s your birthday, silly!” Pinkie explained to Spike, “I remembered that you didn’t like the way Twilight celebrates it every year, but we learned the hard way that it’s a really bad idea to get you actual presents, so I had Fluttershy call in a favour from Discord and we came up with a compromise! He’d use his powers to give you a crazy experience you’d never forget!”

“So,” Discord looked directly at Spike with an unusual degree of seriousness… then smirked, “Did you enjoy my gift?”

Spike thought about it for a minute. “Actually,” he said, “Yeah. It beats getting the same damn book year after year.”